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Old 6th February 2017, 19:29   #106
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Originally Posted by mbz180 View Post

My yardstick of a good cockpit crew:

1) smooth mid air flying (no steep banking to change direction)

2) announce the reasons for delayed take-off if you're sitting in the aircraft (eg runway congestion)

3) a reasonably smooth landing (shouldn't feel like the plane's going to fall apart after another few landings)

Note, I'm using my words very carefully since I have no flying experience and do not personally know a commercial airliner pilot for an informed viewpoint.
You are most welcome to have any yardstick you care to have. Whether the cockpit crew has much impact on it, or whether it constitutes good airmanship is a different matter. Obviously, no arguments, purely from a passengers point of view it makes sense.

Smooth air flying:
The pilots typically don’t choose their routes themselves. It’s their planning departments. The captain is responsible for the safe outcome of the flight so if he believes a route, or part of route could be unsafe, he might deviate. Hitting a bit of turbulence is not necessarily avoidable and doesn’t necessarily mean safety gets compromised. In fact, the worst kind of turbulence, clean air turbulence, is difficult to predict and you can’t see it with the naked eye or any instruments.

Banking really shouldn’t be a problem at all and at cruise altitude aircraft would rarely bank sharply if at all.

Announcement:
no arguments from me here, other than I believe all Indian Crews are the absolute pits when it comes to any and all cabin announcements. It’s not just waiting on the runway. It’s all delays. To be frank, I just experience this non-communicating of some crews as offensive and very customer unfriendly. I’m sitting in your damn aluminium tube, you better talk to me!

Smooth landings
Everybody likes a smooth landing, but sometimes it’s just not possible or even safe. Of course, what some might call reasonable safe, might be very frightening to somebody else.

As a very general rule of thumb, most pilots like to put their planes down in such a way that you get an immediate good firm contact between landing gear and runway. So very long, so called very smooth, landings are not necessarily so good from a pilot and or maintenance point of view.

Pilots dont control the wind speed, gusts and or direction. When there are lots of wind gusts and heavy cross winds landings tend to get a bit more bumpy and shaky. As long as the pilots stay with the operational parameters for which the aircraft and they are certified its perfectly safe, but maybe not comfortable and for some people terrifying.

Also, as you fly a lot: Commercial planes at high / cruise altitude will fly on autopilot, there is simply virtually hand flying at those altitudes. So course corrections are done by or via the autopilot.

On landings, again a lot of landings is on autopilot. There are certain conditions which require the autopilot to handle the landing. Rule of thumb, the more trickier the landing, the more likely you will take it on autopilot.

It’s also very much down to the policy of the individual carriers. Some carriers, in particular some Far East ones simply do not allow hand flying or manual landing at all, or just about at all.

Chances are, as a passenger on commercial flight, you have experienced more autopilot landing than human pilot-landings. And you know what? In most conditions, the autopilot is much better at it than human pilot! More precise and consistent, never has a bad day either.

Jeroen

Last edited by Gannu_1 : 19th February 2017 at 12:31. Reason: guts > gusts.
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Old 7th February 2017, 01:05   #107
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Yes, its a global industry and as I mentioned earlier, India failed to meet IASA standards and was downgraded not to long ago. Since then rectified, but still. Its not about the international rules and regulations perse, it is about strict and consistent adherence all the time to those international rules and regulations.

By the way, even the DGCA has expressed concern over the age of the AI fleet.

http://www.business-standard.com/art...2600042_1.html


Jeroen
India's ranking was downgraded, no doubt but the suggestions from FAA were implemented and India got back its Catagory 1 status. I dont see a reason for such a hype. A sign of any good authority is to welcome feedback and work on suggestions. Its a continues process. The FAA is not without its share of criticism. There are enough concerns regarding regional carriers in the US. There are many in house practices that have been implemented by DGCA that I believe shows commitment towards safety. 100% Breath analyzer being one such step. The FDTL restricting two consecutive night operations by the crew is another. The FDTL in many of the so called mature aviation market is a joke. I am not saying DGCA is perfect, far from it. India needs to go a long way but I do firmly believe that DGCA is actually far stricter than many regulatory agencies. The intent is there.
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On landings, again a lot of landings is on autopilot. There are certain conditions which require the autopilot to handle the landing. Rule of thumb, the more trickier the landing, the more likely you will take it on autopilot.

It’s also very much down to the policy of the individual carriers. Some carriers, in particular some Far East ones simply do not allow hand flying or manual landing at all, or just about at all.

Chances are, as a passenger on commercial flight, you have experienced more autopilot landing than human pilot-landings. And you know what? In most conditions, the autopilot is much better at it than human pilot! More precise and consistent, never has a bad day either.

Jeroen
I would have to disagree here. At least in India, most landings that he would have experienced would have been manual landings. Apart from actual low visibility, I would have performed an auto land may be a handful of times. I dont know of any Indian company that has any restrictions regarding manual landing and most often than not, a pilot would hate to give up his landings unless actually required. You are absolutely spot on though in saying that in many cases, the autopilot is better than its human counterpart.
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Old 7th February 2017, 02:04   #108
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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India's ranking was downgraded, no doubt but the suggestions from FAA were implemented and India got back its Catagory 1 status. I dont see a reason for such a hype. A sign of any good authority is to welcome feedback and work on suggestions. Its a continues process. The FAA is not without its share of criticism. There are enough concerns regarding regional carriers in the US.
.
What sets this incident apart is that it is very rare to be downgraded. The downgrade put India aviation oversight at the same level as Ghana, Bangladesh, Uruguay and a few others.

Continuous process should be upwards, not one step down and two steps up. That’s not how things should work, certainly not in aviation. You maintain the standards and improve upward. The DGCA let standards go south.

Look at the ICAO history and which countries have had downgrades over the years. India is not in good company. It’s all down to consistency and continuous improvement and DGCA failed miserably and finds itself amongst a few other countries nobody wants to be compared to.

Whether it’s a hype or not? Check the facts and the definition:

See: https://www.faa.gov/about/initiatives/iasa/definitions/

to quote:

Quote:
Category 2, Does Not Comply with ICAO Standards: The Federal Aviation Administration assessed this country's civil aviation authority (CAA) and determined that it does not provide safety oversight of its air carrier operators in accordance with the minimum safety oversight standards established by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO).
I would (like to) think that anybody in aviation, especially Indian aviation, would be extremely concerned about this?

The FAA has its share of criticism and I believe I made some comments to that effect in another aviation thread. In all honesty, most likely all national aviation authorities come under criticism at some point in time. For various reasons. But very few had their nation downgraded. That is, in my opinion, a very sad and very worrying, occurrence.

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Old 12th February 2017, 23:17   #109
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

Further to some earlier posts in this thread regarding the need for / lack of manual flying skills in pilots. I made some comments to that. I just came across this YouTube video which is most likely a much better illustration on what has caused directly and indirectly numerous accidents.

It’s all about ensuring the appropriate level of automation for the particular situation you find yourself in.



The video is several years old. But if you, like me, read a lot of accident reports, it appears as if the aviation industry hasn’t been able to crack this yet fully.

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Old 12th February 2017, 23:55   #110
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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India's ranking was downgraded, no doubt but the suggestions from FAA were implemented and India got back its Catagory 1 status. I dont see a reason for such a hype. A sign of any good authority is to welcome feedback and work on suggestions. Its a continues process. The FAA is not without its share of criticism. There are enough concerns regarding regional carriers in the US. There are many in house practices that have been implemented by DGCA that I believe shows commitment towards safety. 100% Breath analyzer being one such step. The FDTL restricting two consecutive night operations by the crew is another. The FDTL in many of the so called mature aviation market is a joke. I am not saying DGCA is perfect, far from it. India needs to go a long way but I do firmly believe that DGCA is actually far stricter than many regulatory agencies. The intent is there.
After having dealt, for years, at close quarters with regulators from well over a dozen countries including EASA, FAA, DGAC, GCAA, CAA and our own DGCA and obtained certifications from them I can say with hand on heart that the DGCA is the least professional and well trained of them all by a significant margin. I am not surprised they got downgraded. I am surprised they got it back with very little real improvement in attitude or way of working.
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Old 13th February 2017, 02:33   #111
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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the DGCA is the least professional and well trained of them all by a significant margin.
I know several (Western) consultants who work for or with the DGCA and they all express the exact same sentiment.

It’s remarkable. As a private pilot in the USA I had lots of contacts with the FAA. You could call them, mail them, talk to them at various seminars, workshops etc.
Same here in Europe. I always found them very open minded, very approachable and helpful.

I never ever managed to get in touch with the DGCA in India. I know they exist, but that’s all.

To some extent I find the same approach in general when it comes to Indian representation in the aviation community. Very little what happens in Indian aviation makes it to the international public space on various forums, seminars, magazines and such.

I’m not sure why, as language certainly isn’t a barrier for Indian pilots. Maybe it is culture? But aviation safety improvement system are (partly) based on learning from your own and other mistakes. I read several aviation magazines and these days you will see plenty of articles where real (commercial and GA) pilots discuss their mistake in great detail so others can learn.

I say this very carefully, as I really don’t want to offend anyone. During my four years in India, one of the things I found was that Indians finds it difficult to “own up” when something went wrong.

Where I come from, the ability to “own up” right down to the last minute detail is extremely important. Of course, one shouldn’t have to do it to often.

But when you mess up, you have to be able to own up, right down to the last dirty messy detail in order to understand, fix and learn from it. In order to do so you need to be part of an environment (culture if you like) that provides empathy, safety and reward to do so.

It’s down to the ability of really having a solid and realistic understanding of one’s own performance. I used to live next door to a very senior KLM captain. He was one of what KLM used to call engineering pilots. Which is sort of company test pilot. When he retired he had close to 20.000 hours in his logbook. And he finished every flight during his whole career by making notes of what he and his crew could do better next time.

I had the pleasure of riding jump seat on his last flight on a Boeing 747-400. He still went through the same routine. When we were parked at the gate, aircraft shut down, paperwork done, he spend five minutes with his two pilots reviewing the flight and discussing what could be improved. He noted everything down in a special (Hemmingway) little notebook. He had a lot of those little books!

Back to our original discussion, it’s fairly easy and straightforward to learn good stick and rudder skills, i.e. manual flying. You do need to exercise them regularly obviously.

Ensuring the appropriate culture in a cockpit is a bit more tricky. The latter is a far bigger factor in aviation accidents then the first one. My previous post about automation challenges is down to culture and attitude as well. (And training obviously, but training tends to be an extension of a certain approach/culture/attitude towards a specific topic)

Jeroen
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Old 13th February 2017, 07:55   #112
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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I say this very carefully, as I really don’t want to offend anyone. During my four years in India, one of the things I found was that Indians finds it difficult to “own up” when something went wrong.
Unfortunately, this is very true and unlikely to change in our lifetime. This is a very strong trait in eastern civilizations, where form/face is more important than fact. I suspect Chinese and Japanese are too susceptible to this, not sure whether they have changed with time.

In any profession in India, critique of the quality of work is taken as critique of the person who did the work. This attitude exists on both sides, the critic and the one who is being critiqued. The reviewer of a work, doesn't just pass judgment on the work, but also on the worker. And the worker takes it as personal insult from the reviewer. This pervasive culture discourages critique as well as acceptance of mistake unless the mistake is too obvious. Sometimes, not even then. The issue becomes one of ego/respect/emotion and not about fact. I have lost count of the number of arguments that started about facts and soon became about feelings and respect.
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Old 13th February 2017, 10:44   #113
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post

I say this very carefully, as I really don’t want to offend anyone. During my four years in India, one of the things I found was that Indians finds it difficult to “own up” when something went wrong.


Jeroen
I wholeheartedly agree with this. One comes across many examples of such behaviour in every facet of daily life where even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary people refuses to take responsibility and to top it all-shifts the blame to someone else and it never ceases to amaze me how it is possible.

The few who are an exception to this, many a times, lose out as they are made to suffer for more than the mistake and looked down upon as weak
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Old 13th February 2017, 11:14   #114
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Originally Posted by V.Narayan View Post
After having dealt, for years, at close quarters with regulators from well over a dozen countries including EASA, FAA, DGAC, GCAA, CAA and our own DGCA and obtained certifications from them I can say with hand on heart that the DGCA is the least professional and well trained of them all by a significant margin. I am not surprised they got downgraded. I am surprised they got it back with very little real improvement in attitude or way of working.
If you have read my previous posts, you would notice that I have not used terms such as professional, approachable, knowledgeable etc etc. I have just said that DGCA is stricter than most regulators. Big difference. Case in point are two incidences that happened in the recent past. One where a famous singer used the PA to hum a few lines. The second was when there was a complaint against a few Indigo pilots about taking photographs in the cockpit while in flight. In the first case, DGCA issued a statement banning the use of PA by persons other than the crew. In the second case, DGCA has prohibited any kind of photography in the cockpit even when the aircraft is on ground. This is what I mean by stricter than others.Keep in mind, stricter does not mean better. I am, in no way, implying that DGCA is better. My choice of the word "Pro Active" in my previous comment was incorrect. What I meant was, in case of a downgrade, DGCA would have taken immediate steps to correct the situation.

Last edited by RVD : 13th February 2017 at 11:23.
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Old 13th February 2017, 11:26   #115
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
I say this very carefully, as I really don’t want to offend anyone. During my four years in India, one of the things I found was that Indians finds it difficult to “own up” when something went wrong.

Where I come from, the ability to “own up” right down to the last minute detail is extremely important. Of course, one shouldn’t have to do it to often.

But when you mess up, you have to be able to own up, right down to the last dirty messy detail in order to understand, fix and learn from it.
Very true indeed. This is a valid observation.

And the reason for this(or rather the lack of it) is the below. Very few organizations do have such an environment. And that is the main reason and a very concerning one for such a behavior. This behavior over time has kind of become a culture which has to be shunned.

Quote:
In order to do so you need to be part of an environment (culture if you like) that provides empathy, safety and reward to do so.

Sorry for the off topic rant. But could not resist your strong observation.
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Old 19th February 2017, 13:04   #116
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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You are most welcome to have any yardstick you care to have. Whether the cockpit crew has much impact on it, or whether it constitutes good airmanship is a different matter.
Agree with most of what you've posted, especially this bit above.

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Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
Smooth air flying:
The pilots typically don’t choose their routes themselves. It’s their planning departments.
Also the routes allowed for most commercial airplanes are regulated and predefined.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jeroen View Post
It’s also very much down to the policy of the individual carriers. Some carriers, in particular some Far East ones simply do not allow hand flying or manual landing at all, or just about at all.

In most conditions, the autopilot is much better at it than human pilot! More precise and consistent, never has a bad day either.
Not true in the Indian context. No Indian carrier allows landing on auto-pilot, as far as I know.

Auto-pilot most certainly can and does have bad days, so pilots must be aware and alert at all times to take over if necessary.

As in examples given in the video you've shared below, auto pilot cannot resolve a situation.

Quote:
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It’s all about ensuring the appropriate level of automation for the particular situation you find yourself in.
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Old 20th February 2017, 09:17   #117
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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In any profession in India, critique of the quality of work is taken as critique of the person who did the work. This attitude exists on both sides, the critic and the one who is being critiqued. The reviewer of a work, doesn't just pass judgment on the work, but also on the worker. And the worker takes it as personal insult from the reviewer. This pervasive culture discourages critique as well as acceptance of mistake unless the mistake is too obvious. Sometimes, not even then. The issue becomes one of ego/respect/emotion and not about fact. I have lost count of the number of arguments that started about facts and soon became about feelings and respect.

I think we are going off-topic but, definitely, your statement above reflects the current situation. I think the reason for the above behavior is, nobody thinks honestly to rectify the error and take corrective action. But, everyone tries to create insecurity in the other through blame game and take advantage of the same(Like No Salary Hike, no progression, OR worst case, Termination)

So, the real issue never comes out and problem will not be solved technically but it will be solved politically
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Old 25th February 2017, 16:32   #118
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

Two long awaited investigation reports of major accidents/ incidents in 2014/2015 in India are now published in the DGCA website.

First one was the landing in very low visibility of an Air India A320 Guwahati- Delhi flight in January 2014 which was diverted to Jaipur due to bad weather. The aircraft was a write off although everyone escaped unhurt.

http://www.dgca.nic.in/accident/reports/VT-ESH.pdf

The other was about a Jet Airways Boeing 737-800 flight in August 2015 from Doha to Kochi whose crew did no less than six un successful approaches , three each at Kochi and Trivandrum(where they diverted) before eventually landing with almost no fuel left on their seventh attempt.

http://www.dgca.nic.in/accident/repo...ent/VT-JFA.pdf.

Both makes for scary reading - for the layman atleast!
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Old 4th April 2017, 01:06   #119
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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So what are you eluding to, do Indian carrier simply not adhere to the approved MEL? Does their MEL not comply with national and or international rules and regulations. Please elaborate.

Jeroen
Here's an example of what happens when MELs meet Indian "chalta hai" attitude of pushing safety to the limit.
http://avherald.com/h?article=4a4bb10d&opt=0

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A GoAir Airbus A320-200, registration VT-WGB performing flight G8-557 from Delhi to Bangalore (India) with 187 passengers and 6 crew, was in the initial climb out of Delhi's runway 28 when the crew stopped the climb at 4000 feet due the left hand engine (PW1127) emitting bangs and streaks of flame. The crew shut the engine down and returned to Delhi for a safe landing on runway 28 about 15 minutes after departure.

India's DGCA reported they are investigating the occurrence. On the previous day while flying from Mumbai to Delhi the crew had received a low oil pressure indication enroute about one hour into the flight, some time later a magnetic chip detector warning came up. Following safe landing the licensed aircraft maintenance engineers (LAME) should have checked the engine due to the magnetic chip detector indication, however, returned the aircraft to service under minimum equipment list requirements permitting it to continue for 10 hours. The aircraft subsequently flew to Leh, could not land there and returned to Delhi, then flew to Guwahati and back. The LAMEs checking the aircraft before departure to Bangalore did not realize that the aircraft had already done 9 hours and would be beyond the 10 hours under MEL upon arrival into Bangalore. The DGCA suspended the license of one of the LAMEs involved pending investigation.
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Old 4th April 2017, 22:09   #120
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Default Re: A trip I'd like to forget: Onboard the Jet Airways flight that skidded off a runway

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Here's an example of what happens when MELs meet Indian "chalta hai" attitude of pushing safety to the limit.
That’s pretty bad! What is probably worse, is that they (likely) have this same attitude to all of their work. So a MEL not adhered to is the least of your worries with this lot!

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